Senior Alyssa Long scores late to lead Lebanon past Branson

LDR photo/Alex Boyer
Lebanon freshman Alyson Johnson delivers a free kick during a high school girls’ soccer game against the Branson Pirates on Friday afternoon. Lebanon won the contest, 1-0.

By: 
ALEX BOYER ALEX@LEBANONDAILYRECORD.COM

With the score tied at 0-0 and just under five minutes to play, Lebanon senior Alyssa Long was able to continue what she has done all year for the Lebanon High School girls’ soccer team, and that is scoring when called upon.

After a handful of looks throughout the entirety of the second half, Long finally got her chance after a ball bounced over the Pirates back line of defense and she was able to make a move past the goalkeeper and put it away for her 13th goal of the season and seal a 1-0 victory.

“They (Branson) have a phenomenal keeper, and she is one of the better ones in the area,” Lebanon head coach Matt Jernigan said. “It felt like one was eventually going to go because we were just in the box, in the box, in the box. Good things happen when you are playing well, and that’s what happened.”

Jernigan mentioned that his defense held their own despite playing a physical Pirates team.

“We challenged our girls at halftime that this was going to be a grit it out win,” he said. “We have girls that are suffering from injuries and hurting from a lot of games, and it would be a matter of who wanted it more.

“Alyson Johnson, Skyler Hough, Keshian Grimes, Ashlynn Leochner and Lydia Long all played really well to get the shutout back there.”

Lebanon goalkeeper Abbey Schmidt finished the contest with 12 saves and recorded her sixth shutout of the season.

Senior midfielder Haleigh Dearborn received a lot of praise for the consistent performance she has had for the ‘Jackets this year.

“People who know soccer and watch us play know how well Haleigh plays,” Jernigan said. “She didn’t come off the field once (on Friday) and as a midfielder that is tough to do and she has played great for us all year long, and she knows this is her time.”

Lebanon will travel to Springfield on Monday to take on the Glendale Falcons and will host New Covenant Academy on Tuesday at the turf field for Senior Night starting at 5:30 p.m.

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The Lebanon Daily Record

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